Archive for the ‘Poker Tournaments’ Category

WSOP Main Event Online Beats $25m Guarantee – Sets Record for Online Poker Tournaments

Sunday, August 30th, 2020

Many questioned how well the WSOP Main Event Online on GGPoker would go. After all, the Main Event normally takes place on the main stage of the Las Vegas Rio. The results are in, and the online main event is not only a success, but a record-breaking tournament.

The 2020 WSOP Main Event Online has attracted 5,802 players and a $27,559,500 prize pool. This $27.56 million prize pool beats the previous online poker tournament record, set by the 2018 Partypoker Millions Online ($21,385,000).

Main Event Picks Up Steam Late

Things weren’t looking good for the online ME at first. Only $13,155,000 in prize money was available after 15 flights in Day 1.

GGPoker guaranteed $25 million for this event, which meant that a massive overlay was threatening the tournament organizers.

However, everything turned around within the last eight flights of Day 1. Players poured their $5,000 entry fees into the pot to create the aforementioned $27.56 million prize pool.

Remaining Schedule on the WSOP Main Event Online

Day 2 of the Main Event just recently started. This tourney is set to run until September 6, at which point the final table will take place.

The winner stands to receive $3,904,686 in prize money. Meanwhile, all of the final table participants will collect at least $230,395.

These final table payouts definitely aren’t as big as those seen in years past. Nevertheless, they’re better than what many expected for an online ME.

What to Expect Moving Forward

Kahle Burns grabbed the lead after Day 1 with a chip stack of 1,387,282. Jonathan Dokler is a distant second with 1,021,967 chips.

Some notable players who’ve advanced include Dan Smith (421,653 chips), Igor Kurganov (393,881), Rainer Kempe (371,292), David Peters (357,981), Ole Schemion (318,519), Brandon Adams (303,004), and Adrian Mateos (294,227).

Phil Hellmuth is still alive as well with 108,644 chips. He’s looking to extend his record of 15 gold bracelets. However, Hellmuth has a tough task ahead of him considering his fairly small chip stack.

GGPoker Crashes While Hosting WSOP Online Bracelet Series

Tuesday, July 21st, 2020

WSOP.com recently handed the baton to GGPoker for hosting the 2020 WSOP Online Bracelet Series. GGPoker had a rough start, though, when their software crashed.

The site discovered a critical bug that forced them to shut things down. Meanwhile, Events #32 and #33 have been postponed until further notice.

What Happened with the Bug?

GGPoker tweeted about what happened regarding the software bug. However, their explanation didn’t exactly clear the air:

“The bug was caused by an overwhelming number of players joining The Opener and other side events. The tournament servers were unable to resume due to high loads. We will increase more capacity (we just doubled it) to make sure future events run smoothly.”

The bug affected the $1,111 COVID Relief Charity and $100 Opener tournaments. While these tourneys aren’t exactly the Main Event, many still expected them to run smoothly.

Should Players Accept GGPoker’s Excuse?

Unsurprisingly, some players weren’t happy with the poker room’s explanation for the shutdown. After all, most major online poker sites fully understand what type of server capacity they need to run tournaments. One person tweeted:

“You didn’t prep for this we are in 2020 you know? For someone who hosts the WSOP that’s pretty laughable, the fact your given out a $100 tournament money in your words as a ‘Reward’ is also laughable. I wouldn’t want to touch your site after this.”

Did GGPoker Get Hacked?

Several Twitter users questioned if GG was merely trying to cover up for a hack. Again, it seems strange that they wouldn’t have enough server capacity when running WSOP tournaments.

This explanation borders on conspiracy theory given that there’s no way to truly tell if a hack occurred. However, it would explain why they had so much trouble on their first day of hosting the WSOP Online Bracelet Series.

Main Event Champ Joe McKeehen Wins 2020 WSOP Online Event #14

Monday, July 20th, 2020

Five years ago, Joe McKeehen won the 2015 WSOP Main Event. His winning ways continue as he just took down Event #14 of the 2020 WSOP Online Bracelet series.

McKeehen, who now has three gold bracelets, emerged victorious in a $3,200 NL Hold’em High Roller event. He collected a $352,985 payout for the win.

Details on McKeehen’s Online Bracelet Win

Event #14 drew 368 players and 486 entries when accounting for rebuys. The field included a number of legends, such as Phil Hellmuth (“Lumestackin”), Chance Kornuth (“bingshui”), Chris Ferguson, and Daniel Negreanu.

McKeehen wasn’t intimidated, though, and played well from start to finish in the series’ largest buy-in tournament. He eventually faced off against Frank “thewholefunk” Funaro heads-up for the title. Funaro settled for second place and his biggest-ever cash at $219,089.

Here are some of the big names that cashed in Event #14:

  1. Joe McKeehen (“fanofdapoker”) – $352,985
  2. Ryan Depaulo (“joeyisamush”) – $11,459
  3. Loren Klein (“BabyJesus”) – $11,459
  4. Ryan Laplante (“protential”) – $8,293
  5. Maria Konnikova (“bluerat”) – $6,031

McKeehen’s Strong Poker Career Continues

Some WSOP Main Event champs don’t go on to do great things after their crowning achievement. However, Joe McKeehen has definitely proven to have staying power.

He first gained poker stardom after winning the 2015 WSOP ME along with $7,683,346. Rather than resting on his laurels, McKeehen continued grinding and racking up live tournament cashes.

He added a second gold bracelet by winning the 2017 WSOP $10,000 Limit Hold’em Championship along with $311,817. As covered before, McKeehen added his third bracelet after taking down Event #14 this summer.

In all, he has $16,652,259 in live tournament cashes. Over half of this money has come away from the Main Event win. It looks like McKeehen is poised to continue playing well into the future.

Poker Fight Breaks Out at King’s Casino Rozvadov

Tuesday, July 14th, 2020

King’s Casino Rozvadov is currently hosting the Balkan Poker Circuit Main Event. Everything seemed to be going according to plan as far as live poker tournaments go.

However, a fight broke out in the later stages of the tourney. As shown in the video below, a group of players began fist-fighting and swinging chairs.

Fortunately, King’s Casino is a large and well-funded establishment that had plenty of security guards on hand. The latter quickly broke up the fight before too many people got hurt.

No Reason Given for the King’s Casino Poker Brawl

It’s obvious that flaring tempers caused the fight to break out. However, no specific cause has been pinpointed for why the brawl started.

The €175 Balkan Poker Circuit Main Event drew over 2,000 entries. One of the players who entered was right near the fight when it started. He wrote about the experience on TwoPlusTwo.

“As if out of nowhere, a player got up and hit another player in the head five times or more,” the 2+2 member wrote. “The blood is spattered all over the table.

“The victim fell over and the offender continued to hit him. Four other players fought with each other. After that, the security team arrested the offender.”

This Fight Shouldn’t Affect King’s Casino Too Badly

The incident described above seems like it could be from a Wild West poker game. Again, though, the King’s Casino Rozvadov staff was quick to pull the perpetrators apart and restore peace.

Located in the Czech Republic, not far from the German border, King’s Casino has become the premier poker venue in Europe. It has hosted the WSOP Europe since 2017 and regularly draws large numbers to tournaments.

Of course, King’s Casino had to close down during the COVID-19 pandemic. However, it’s been running since May and is now holding live tournaments again.

Daniel Negreanu Makes $1 Million Prop Bet that He’ll Win 2020 WSOP Bracelet

Sunday, June 14th, 2020

Daniel Negreanu has bet $1 million on his ability to win a gold bracelet at the 2020 WSOP. With 101 online and live tournaments on the schedule, Negreanu will have many chances to win.

Kid Poker currently holds six gold bracelets. However, he hasn’t been able to capture a seventh victory since the 2013 World Series of Poker.

Online Events Give Negreanu a Stronger Chance

The 2020 WSOP will feature a different format than it has within the last five decades. Rather than most of the events running live, most tourneys will instead take place online.

COVID-19 has forced the organizers to rethink the traditional format. Rather than stuffing numerous people in a poker room, the WSOP has chosen to socially distance with an online-heavy schedule.

85 of the events will run through a combination of WSOP.com (Nevada and New Jersey only) and GGPoker.com (international). The remaining 16 live tournaments may or may not actually happen at the Rio as planned.

In any case, the online tourneys will allow Negreanu to play in more events. They make for the possibility of multi-tabling, which just isn’t available in a live format.

Bettors Have Already Lined Up

Negreanu hasn’t experienced any trouble finding takers on his bet. He’s already accepted $1 million in wagers from a variety of players.

The biggest bettors, Ali Imisrovic and Connor Drinan, both wagered $100,000. Assuming Negreanu wins a bracelet, he stands to receive $2.5 million from the bettors.

Kid Poker will get his first crack at winning the bracelet along with a $2.5m side bet on July 1. He lives in Nevada, so he won’t have any trouble playing in the WSOP.com events.

From here, he plans to move to Mexico to enjoy the remaining tournaments on GGPoker. Negreanu also represents GG as an ambassador.

PokerStars Cancels Live Euro Tournaments Due to Coronavirus

Tuesday, March 10th, 2020

The coronavirus pandemic is affecting many sectors of business and entertainment. Poker hasn’t been immune to the virus outbreak either.

Case in point, PokerStars has cancelled three upcoming live Euro tournaments as a precautionary measure. They fear that having too many players crowded next to each other could increase the spread of infection.

Which PokerStars Live Euro Events Are Cancelled?

PokerStars has cancelled scheduled tournament events that were set to take place in France, Germany, and Spain within the next few weeks.

  • Hamburg (Germany) Mar. 10-15
  • La Grand Motte (France) Mar. 10-15
  • Madrid Gran Via (Spain) Mar. 31 to Apr. 5

The Stars Group, their parent company, is taking a wait-and-see approach with the pandemic. Assuming they feel that the coronavirus spread slows considerably, they plan to resume Euro events on April 10, 2020.

Some European countries, including Italy, are really struggling with the virus outbreak. Italy has already seen hundreds die from COVID-19, and this number seems likely to reach into the thousands. The Boot is on lockdown in an effort to stop the spread.

What to Expect in the Future with PokerStars Live Tournaments

PokerStars no doubt went back and forth on whether to cancel events that would’ve drawn thousands of players. They weren’t under any legal obligation to stop the tournaments in France, Spain, and Germany either.

Nevertheless, they made the responsible decision in hopes of getting their PokerStars Live series back on track in the future.

Speaking of which, they could very well be running tournaments in mid or late April. Much depends upon how bad the virus outbreak is across the world.

Of course, some worry that the World Series of Poker could be cancelled this year. If this happens, then COVID-19 will have probably spread to the point where it cancels live tourneys until later in the year.

Will Coronavirus Affect 2020 WSOP?

Friday, February 28th, 2020

The coronavirus is continuing to spread around the globe. In fact, the US has just seen its first case where somebody doesn’t know where they contracted the virus.

The 2020 World Series of Poker is set to begin in less than three months. Some poker players wonder if it will happen as planned.

This year’s edition begins on May 26 at the Rio All-Suites Hotel and Casino. However, the Coronavirus could be in full swing throughout America at this point.

WSOP Officials Keeping Tabs on Coronavirus

World Series of Poker officials are just as concerned as the players about Coronavirus fears. Seth Palansky, Caesars VP of Communications, said that they’ve been “monitoring the situation and will continue to lean on the experts in this field for guidance.”

The good news is that, as of now, Palansky assures all WSOP tournaments are going to proceed as scheduled. The organization will only consider making changes if absolutely necessary.

What the Coronavirus Means for the 2020 WSOP

Last year’s running of the World Series of Poker drew over 50,000 players from 87 countries. It also set attendance records, with well over 200,000 entries across the tournaments.

The WSOP has been breaking records year after year. The Coronavirus, though, threatens to derail all of this.

With thousands of players passing cards and chips around, such a virus could spread more easily. Those who are afraid of getting sick won’t want to take their chances.

Palansky plans to combat these fears to some degree by making hand sanitizer available in abundance. He also noted that organizers are “prepared to expand measures to ensure the safety of our guests and employees, again leaning on the experts.”

2020 WSOP Schedule Will Feature Nine High Rollers

Thursday, January 30th, 2020

The 2020 World Series of Poker will once again feature a number of interesting events. Among the most eye-catching aspects of the schedule includes nine high roller tournaments.

The WSOP considers any event that features a buy-in worth $25,000 or more to be a high roller. This coming summer will feature nine of these tourneys with buy-ins ranging from $25,000 to $250,000.

Closer Look at the 2020 WSOP High Rollers

One of the most-notable high stakes tournaments in the 2020 WSOP is the $25,000 Pot-Limit Omaha High Roller. This event is considered the most-popular PLO tournament in the game. In 2019, Stephen Chidwick won the event and $1,618,417 after topping a field of 278 players. This year, you can catch the PLO High Roller starting on June 17.

The $50,000 Poker Players Championship will return yet again. Many pros attend this tournament every year. In 2020, the $50k Players Championship will start on July 7.

The prestigious Super High Roller will begin on June 27. This event, which features a $250,000 buy-in, will be the most-expensive tournament of the summer.

Other High Rollers at the 2020 WSOP

Here are the remaining high rollers that aren’t covered above:

  • High Roller No-Limit Hold’em 8-Handed (May 29) – $25,000
  • Heads-Up No-Limit Hold’em 8-Handed (May 31) – $25,000
  • High Roller No-Limit Hold’em (June 5) – $50,000
  • High Roller Pot Limit Omaha 8-Handed (July 7) – $50,000
  • High Roller No-Limit Hold’em 8-Handed (July 9) – $50,000
  • High Roller No-Limit Hold’em 8-Handed (July 11) – $100,000

The full 2020 World Series of Poker schedule still has yet to be released. But as can be seen, event organizers are doing their best to cater to the game’s wealthiest grinders.

The nine high rollers are sure to offer multimillion-dollar prizes. The $250k Super High Roller will especially be interesting in terms of prize money.

Dusk Till Dawn Removes Casino Tables in Favor of Poker

Tuesday, December 10th, 2019

Many casinos have cut down on poker tables to increase their casino offerings. The UK’s Dusk Till Dawn is taking the opposite approach by removing gaming tables so they can better concentrate on poker.

Owner Rob Yong made the executive decision to go all in on poker. Yong feels that his club has slipped somewhat with live poker events by spreading themselves too thin.

He also doesn’t like the term “casino owner.” Yong wants to be known as a card club rather than a full-blown gambling venue.

Sports Bar & Bigger Poker Tournaments Are the Plan

A sports bar will replace the area where the casino table games were housed. Some of the vacant space will also allow for bigger poker tournaments in the future.

Through a video, Young explains more on his decision to concentrate on poker. He notes that UK gaming regulators scrutinize Dusk Till Dawn more because of the casino games.

This club has always been known as a poker venue first. It launched in 2007 while being billed as Europe’s biggest poker room.

Dusk Till Dawn now hosts the Partypoker Millions and WPT UK. However, they struggled at one point—especially following Black Friday (2011).

Young brought in blackjack and roulette to generate some additional revenue. The plan initially worked, but it no longer appears as profitable.

Dusk Till Dawn Could Capitalize on Growing Live Poker

The poker boom may be long over. However, the live portion of the game is still growing. Dusk Till Dawn is hoping to better capitalize on live poker’s ascension.

After all, tournament fields have grown to epic proportions within the last few years. The UK tournament scene is especially enjoying an uptick. Yong obviously sees these signs as encouragement that his club should go back to its roots.

Daniel Negreanu Rails Against Re-Entry Poker Tournaments

Monday, December 9th, 2019

Many poker tournaments now allow re-entries to help build prize pools. Daniel Negreanu is tired of this trend and wants poker to make freezeouts the standard again.

The WPT Five Diamond caused Negreanu to get riled up about the matter. Event organizers have chosen to allow re-entries for the $10,000 Main Event.

Negreanu May Only Fire One Bullet

During his complaint, Negreanu noted that he’ll still play in the WPT Five Diamond Main Event. However, he might play it without using a re-entry.

He’s also considering something of a protest throughout 2020. Kid Poker raised the possibility of not re-buying into a single event next year.

Re-entries usually favor poker pros with large bankrolls. After all, well-funded pros can more easily afford to use re-buys than amateurs.

Therefore, Negreanu stands to benefit from re-buys more than anybody. Nevertheless, he’s sick of more and more tournaments going the re-entry route.

Will Negreanu’s Efforts Make Any Difference?

Daniel Negreanu would be putting himself at a disadvantage if he really goes through with this plan next year. After all, he’s one of the richest and best tournament players in the world.

But he feels so passionately against re-entries that he’s willing to avoid using them. If so, would he inspire other pros and amateurs to do the same?

Chances are, other professionals will continue taking advantage of rebuys as much as possible. They’re already looking forward to positive EV in tournaments, so they might as well fire more bullets.

Amateurs don’t seem to mind being at a disadvantage in these events. Also, live poker is growing at a rapid pace.

That said, Negreanu could be on an island in staging his re-entry protest. Only time will tell if he convinces more organizers to offer extra freezeouts.